Research, schematic design, and design development were completed in a single studio. The issued brief was to program a 22 story housing tower at a given urban infill location near downtown Columbus, Ohio. Students in groups of three addressed assigned themes. ‘Urban Families’ required that the design proposal provide a place for growing families in the city that had otherwise pushed them to the suburbs.
A block of residential units catering to varying family sizes is situated between two parks. The parks create a secured exterior space for children within the center of a dense urban environment. The base of the tower contains a day care center which uses the secured second level park area as a play space. It provides services for child residents and the greater community.
Multiple unit sizes are interlocked within the building so that families can move between apartments
when children are added to or move out from the household. The modularity of the units reflects the
modular needs of larger and smaller families. Children need a certain bedroom area. Adults require
an entire module for their bedroom. Additional interstitial spaces between modules accumulates with additional bedrooms to create a larger flexible living and dining room for a larger number of people housed in the unit.
Balconies are adjacent to each unit’s living room and are larger when created at a corner of the exterior wall. On the interior, balconies act to extend the living plane beyond the curtain wall of the building in order to provide additional floor area outside the limited footprint. They can be enclosed to act as a sun room and to provide comfort and safety despite the height of the unit above ground. On the exterior balconies are used to create play and variability on an otherwise monolithic facade.
Two parks are programmed into the tower. One is located on the roof, while the other has been created just above the lobby and daycare area at the second and third floors. A play-area type netting encloses the open void which has been created through the use of transfer beams and extended columns. This play area doubles as the playground for the daycare and can be used by children within the building.
The heights of the play area and the height of the opening reflect contextual cues of the area. A neighborhood oriented to the street can be continued on the North side of the building while the South side can correspond to the heights of the brutalist concrete Nationwide buildings that are the beginning of the downtown.
I was directly involved the production of all portions shown. Excluded presentation materials did not
include my involvement or leadership
Status: School Project
Location: Columbus, OH, US